Published Friday, Jan. 14, 2022, 1:59 pm
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The internet revolution changed the way we live. It has changed how people interact, socialize and contact one another. It has made business efficient and therefore life has become a lot easier for everyone using it. However, there is a certain catch to this gold mine. Human addiction to using websites and apps has become the norm. Before even realizing, we become helplessly addicted to this digital world to the point where other aspects of life start to get compromised. For that, it is quite essential to block certain websites and apps that consume human time more than usual before they get detrimental.
There are several ways to block online websites and apps using tools we have on our computers and smartphones, and we are going to delve into the major ones below. Moreover, there are self-exclusion schemes available in many countries around the world that block your access to websites. For instance, in the UK, all regulated betting sites are compatible with Gamstop, the local self-exclusion scheme from gambling. You can rest assured though that there are several websites on which you can try sports betting not on Gamstop too.
This method is one of the simplest ways to allow only certain internet content to be accessed on your devices. The internet browser that is being used can be modified in a way where prohibited websites and apps can be blocked.
Allow the internet browser of use to open apps and websites just from that browser where the permission to access the content is taken beforehand.
We can use URL blocklist to block all URLs and then use the allow-list to access certain domains and subdomains that follow a scheme or an algorithm which goes with the admin’s preference of use.
This can also be done if we only block URLs we do not want to access and the rest of the websites and apps can work in the usual way.
Host File is that file which is used by a personal device to access the internet. By tampering with this file, a user can manually stop certain files from launching. This can easily be done personally without having to buy some extension or membership for blocking websites and apps, though it does come with the extra work of going through the hassle of editing your computer’s host file.
For Microsoft Windows, we will open NotePad and use the directory: Windows/ System32/ drivers/ etc. folder on our hard drive. Under the last line, we will type “127.0.0.1” which is followed by a space. The URL of the website that we want to block will then be added. If we want to add new websites to block then we’ll add new lines underneath and then finally save the file. Then we will restart the computer and see our changes have been established with the websites no longer accessible.
We will type “sudo nano /etc./hosts” and hit Enter, then enter our macOS account password to open the hosts’ file. Similarly, like Windows, we can then add new websites to the end of the file, one site per line, using the format “127.0.0.1 www.websiteurl.com”. We then need to type “sudo dscacheutil -flushcache” and hit enter to apply the changes.
There are thousands of tools available on the internet which can be used to block websites and apps a user does not want to access anymore. They are either free, or come in different packages which can be on a monthly basis or annual basis. This is the most widely accepted form of banning websites and apps from devices.
Story by Gordon Bennett
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